Sunday Supper & More

Tuscan-style baked beans

(Jonathan Levitt for The Boston Globe)
January 12, 2011

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Serves 4 with leftovers

Allow time to soak the beans overnight and then 3 1/2 hours for the beans to cook. Roast the leeks beside the beans.

8 cups dried cannellini, yellow-eyed, or other small white beans, soaked overnight in water to cover
4 cloves garlic, crushed
5 sprigs fresh rosemary
1/2 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
6 leeks, trimmed of dark green, cut into 2-inch lengths, and well rinsed
4 eggs
1 cup pitted marinated green olives
Olive oil (for sprinkling)
Extra sprigs fresh rosemary (for garnish)
1 lemon, cut into 4 wedges (for serving)

1. Set the oven at 250 degrees. Drain the beans and transfer to a large, flameproof casserole. Add enough water to cover them by 1 inch. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 30 minutes or until the skins start to split and peel back.

2. Stir in the garlic, rosemary, 1/4 cup of the olive oil, salt, and pepper. The beans should be covered with water; add more water if necessary. Cover the pot and transfer to the oven.

3. Bake the beans for 3 hours, or until they are soft enough to mash. Remove the lid and continue cooking for 30 minutes to thicken the liquid.

4. Meanwhile, in a roasting pan, toss the leeks with the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil. Roast, turning several times, for 1 hour.

5. Bring a saucepan of water to a boil. Add the eggs and set the timer for 5 minutes. Immediately transfer the eggs to cold water. With the back of a spoon, gently tap the shells all over and return to the cold water. Peel carefully and set on paper towels to dry.

6. Set aside 4 cups of cooked beans for the soup. Ladle the remaining beans into shallow bowls. Add a soft-cooked egg, leeks, and olives to each one. Sprinkle with olive oil and garnish with rosemary and lemon.

Jonathan Levitt